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Author Topic: HA + fearing going to dr = me.  (Read 353 times)

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Offline terri

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HA + fearing going to dr = me.
« on: March 04, 2014, 11:08:47 PM »
sorry for posting so much tonight, guys. i feel bad, but i also think it has to do with the fact that i am now starting to come to terms with the fact that i need to get off my rear and get to a doctor. there's just one huge issue with that:

I AM DEATHLY AFRAID OF DOCTORS. [mainly what they are going to tell me]

my husband is in the military, so we have great insurance coverage. i can go to the doctor all day everyday, if i wanted to. BUT, ALSO, because my husband is military -- this means that he is gone all of the time on deployments and underways, when they are out to sea doing training. i keep promising myself that i'm going to go to a doctor to get a full check up before he deploys again this year. THEN, i start to tell myself that i am going to go to the doctors after deployment. because if i go before, and they tell me i have cancer - i will be alone during that time. i will be alone fighting it, etc.

it's so easy for me to sit here behind a computer screen and tell other people what they should do when it comes to their fears - but so hard for me to be able to do it on my own. i was diagnosed with white coat syndrome three years ago. the last time i have seen a doctor was 28 months ago.

anyone ever go through this and gotten through it? if so, what helped you? i am scared to have an attack in front of the, and them put me away or something like that.
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Offline Lynxana

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Re: HA + fearing going to dr = me.
« Reply #1 on: March 05, 2014, 12:31:05 AM »
I haven't been diagnosed with white coat syndrome but I can tell you I am afraid when I have to go to the  doctor.  I have an anxiety fit every time.  However what helps me is several things.  First off realizing that you MUST is the first step.  Regardless of what they might say.  If they in fact do find something it is better to know than not knowing.  People with HA are afraid of death.  If we weren't we wouldn't be that afraid of doctors, diseases, and medications. 

Most of the time it turns out to be our fears that are plaguing our minds and nothing else.  However illness and disease is a part of life.  If we go unchecked because of our fears and it is something that needs to be dealt with death could result or some other form of permanent damage. 

That's the first thing I do. 

I am in the middle of dealing with if I have throat cancer or not.  I know I have to go to an ENT and I started researching which one I was going to go to last night.  I am gonna do it.  It will probably turn out to be nothing harmful.  However if they do find some form of cancer (been a smoker for 20 years) I need to deal with it.  Granted I am TERRIFIED! I watched and assisted my mom when she got cancer, but it was caught too late and there was little they could do.  It was hard and now I'm very afraid of cancer and chemo.  But I do know that if they would have caught it sooner my mother would probably still be here and that ticks me off. 

So I force myself with all of my might and force a friend to go with me.  All of my friends are very aware of my HA and they may joke about it from time to time, but every time I've needed one of them to assist me when my fear was heightened they would. 

So the second is find a friend to take with you. 

Also my doctors are aware of my issues and they are pretty supportive about it.  My doctor will explain everything to me in step by step details and if their is something that sets me off she will try to find an alternative method to help me.  If there is no other choice she explains that to me and we work on calming my fears.  One of my worst phobias is medicine and i have to take it at the doctors after I get it filled and there must be a shot for allergic reactions around.  Even though I've never had one. 

Find a doctor who understands.  You don't have to go to the first doctor you come around.  Shop to find one that fits you. 

Anxiety, Hypochondria, and other anxiety based disorders they do not put you away for.  Talk to them and inform them of your problems.  If they are not sympathetic find someone else!


Anyways that's what I do. 

Hope it helps you or at least gives you some ideas. 
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Offline terri

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Re: HA + fearing going to dr = me.
« Reply #2 on: March 05, 2014, 06:35:08 AM »
thanks
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Offline notdyingtoday

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Re: HA + fearing going to dr = me.
« Reply #3 on: March 05, 2014, 06:49:49 AM »
I'm definitely right there with you. I have avoidant personality disorder and had a horrible, dismissive doctor all through my childhood/teenage years who would get visibly annoyed if you took more than two minutes with her. Between the two of those, plus being terrified that they'll tell me the worst news possible, I absolutely hate hate hate doctors.

The previous poster gave most of the suggestions I would (aside from my own silly trick, which is to listen to 'Eye of the Tiger' by Survivor or some other cheesy gonna-fly-now sort of song all the way there, which helps me laugh at myself), but I just wanted to say that you're definitely not alone.
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"Nothing’s lost forever. In this world, there is a kind of painful progress. Longing for what we’ve left behind and dreaming ahead. At least I think that’s so."

Offline marc

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Re: HA + fearing going to dr = me.
« Reply #4 on: March 05, 2014, 07:31:51 AM »
I am deathly afraid of the dentist and have not been in around 18-24 months. However, when it comes to doctors,
I am the opposite. I have excellent physicians that I see; internal medicine, ENT, GI and dermatologist.
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Never, Never, Never, give up.

Offline terri

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Re: HA + fearing going to dr = me.
« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2014, 07:45:24 AM »
i don't think i am scared of doctors - i am just scared of the news that they will give me.

and yeah, i agree....going to the doctor and finding out IF something is wrong is better than not knowing. but when you have a legit fear of going and finding out said news, it's so much easier said than done  :traurig001:
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Offline Lynxana

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Re: HA + fearing going to dr = me.
« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2014, 08:25:52 AM »
I know it is.  I've been there... The last thing I want to hear is there is something wrong.  Most of us here probably feel this way.  I hope you find the courage and get it checked.  Cancer is not something I ever want and I'm pretty sure if I ever find out I have it I will petrified and it will probably get worse for me because I am so afraid of chemo it's ridiculous. 

Although a mention that you might find helpful or at least interesting.  My friends mom has kidney cancer and she has to have no surgery.  They have a new technique that is working very well called Cryosurgery.  What they do is give you a mild sedative and insert a needle into the cancer and freeze it.  After which, they explode it and your body does the job to move it out.  From what I understand it is effective and requires a lot less recovery time.  They are finding more and more cancers to use it on.   It is still new but they have had good results. 
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Online Sunlover

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Re: HA + fearing going to dr = me.
« Reply #7 on: March 05, 2014, 09:16:19 AM »
I am like you!  I do this - if it's something that is just vague I wait to see if it will get worse or resolve on its own (never has anything gotten worse so I never went nor even mentioned it)  if it's something that is uncomfortable I will wait to see if that gets worse, it THAT doesn't go away I will eventually tell the doctor (maybe over a year later!) if it's something that started suddenly and then remains the same then I KNOW it can't be anything bad so I wait until my next regular check up (I go for blood pressure checks every 6 months) and mention it in an "oh by the way" sort of way.  (so that he won't be concerned) - I am deathly afraid of being sent for tests!   If I think he'd suggest ANY kind of scan, MRI, colonoscopy, NO WAY would I mention anything unless I simply couldn't function physically or if I KNEW there was something wrong (ie:  If I were falling over every 2 feet, pooping loads of blood, etc!) - it's the getting sent for a test, then the waiting for that appointment to come up, then the waiting for the results, that would KILL me!   But a "Hey, what's this thing on my skin?"  or if I could be diagnosed right there with a urine sample - I'm OK with that.
Somehow I have this convoluted thinking that, "OK if I GO to a doctor then something WILL be seriously wrong, if I DON'T go then it's nothing"  Makes no sense!  (but do we ever?   :sprachlos020:)
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Offline famv5

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Re: HA + fearing going to dr = me.
« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2014, 09:56:00 AM »
I don't mind so much going to the doctor.  I have a great new doctor and just love her!  I think that's important.  I find that if I'm fixated on something being wrong it's worse for me.  If I go and have it checked out and turns out to be nothing, I feel better.  I say that, but I'm sure if it turned out to be something wrong I'd be terrified. 

Now there are certain things I do put off.  For example, my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer when she was 43.  I know I'm at a higher risk in getting it so I'm terrified.  I put off getting a mammogram because I didn't want to hear bad news.  But this past year, I was getting such strong aching pains under my arm and my armpit into the breast.  It also felt hard at times like a lump.  I think I got to the point that I was so scared and worried for my kids that I made myself go.  My doctor also was the one that gave me the courage.  I had my husband go with me which helped A LOT.  I agree with the prior post on having a friend go with you.  It really makes a difference.  Anyway, I cried during most of the mammogram with fear that something would show up.  The technician was very nice and told me that she really didn't see anything and normally wouldn't say anything but she knew how upset I was.  Turns out, everything came back fine.  I was shocked and SO relieved!  Would you believe that the pains I was having stopped instantly after that?  It was as if my body was making those pains to get me to get this mammogram done.  Weird. 

Now have me deal with a dentist and that's a whole other fear I can't get past. :)
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"Our anxiety does not empty tomorrow of its sorrows, but only empties today of its strengths" - Charles H. Spurgeon

Online soaringfalcon

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Re: HA + fearing going to dr = me.
« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2014, 10:08:18 AM »
I'm in the same boat.  I hate it.  Even if I'm just going for a routine physical and I'm NOT in the middle of an HA meltdown...I still get scared.

I do better if I make the appointment first thing in the morning.  That way, I can go and not have to dwell all day.  I also take something to distract me.

Good luck!
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Offline terri

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Re: HA + fearing going to dr = me.
« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2014, 12:31:47 PM »
 :traurig001:
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Offline Reallyworried93

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Re: HA + fearing going to dr = me.
« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2014, 04:12:59 PM »
You see I'm the opposite I go to often!
:( sometimes I get worried that there gonna end up palming real symptoms off as anxiety!
I get to obsessive about 'symptoms' to the point where I HAVE to go for some reassurance otherwise I end up with constant panic attacks!
I'm the same as you, I give advise but never take my own! Xx
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Offline Scaredofsymptoms

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Re: HA + fearing going to dr = me.
« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2014, 04:44:07 PM »
I wish I was that way!
I go so often that i have a doctor in every field. Great PCP, Obgyn, Endocronologist, Gastro, Neurologist, ENT, Dentist, Oral Surgeon....etc.
My cell phone is hilarious. I have a huge list of doctors and everyone thinks I'm deathly ill when they scroll through my phone.
Nope- just always there for reassurance. Its sick!

And all of their nurse assistants hate me since I call and ask for everything to be explained in detail after the appointments. haha.  :P
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Offline famv5

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Re: HA + fearing going to dr = me.
« Reply #13 on: March 05, 2014, 05:01:55 PM »
I am the same way.  If I have a pain of some kind for more than a day or so, I'm on the phone making an appt.   I also then second guess what the doctor thinks afterwards. 
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"Our anxiety does not empty tomorrow of its sorrows, but only empties today of its strengths" - Charles H. Spurgeon

Offline crikee57

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Re: HA + fearing going to dr = me.
« Reply #14 on: March 05, 2014, 05:26:12 PM »
As you know, I also fear going to the doctor and going is pretty much a recipe for me to have a panic attack.  However, here are some of the things I have found helpful.

1. Choose a doctor who understands anxiety but always checks the physical first before assuming any symptoms are just anxiety.
2. Find a doctor you can trust and like.  Once you are comfortable with your doctor it does become a tiny bit easier.  I have cried in front of mine due to the anxiety being so high when I went.  She understood and calmed me.  I think that experience alone made me know she was on my side.
3. Remember that you can have a panic attack there.  No one will judge you and no one is gonna lock you up.  1 in 4 women have panic or anxiety issues these days.  The doctor has seen it before.  (if not, then they aren't the right doctor for you anyway)
4. Ask that your vitals (i.e. blood pressure) is taken at the end of the appointment and not the second you get into the room.  A high reading from panic at the beginning of the appointment will make things worse for the rest of the appointment.
5. If you can have someone there with you, do that. However, make sure it is someone familiar with your panic and anxiety.  The last thing you need is someone who without knowing says something that can set you off even more.  I learned this lesson the hard way. If you can't have someone there, have someone you can call or text available so you know you have someone you can talk to and distract and calm down.
6. Arrive as close to your appointment time as possible.  Getting there early and waiting a longer time will only increase the time to worry and speculate and thus your anxiety.
7. Keep reminding yourself that our fears aren't based in reality and that we imagine the worst.  Just because we fear a certain thing does not mean it is real or going to happen.

Hope this helps. 
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It's not what's in front of us that stops us.  It's what's inside that holds us back.

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